How to be on the show dance moms
How Do You Get Cast On 'Dance Moms'? The Audition Process Is A Lot More Hollywood Than It Seems
by Allison Piwowarski
Is anything what it seems on reality TV? Here I've been thinking that all the stars of Dance Moms are just Abby Lee Dance Company dancers (and their moms) who have trained with Abby and happen to be on the show. Turns out, I am a gullible gal, because there's a lot more Hollywood pizzazz thrown into the casting of Dance Moms than you'd think. If you ever found yourself wondering, "How do all of these moms who want their daughters to be stars just magically show up on this series?" it's because the only magic involved is Hollywood magic. So what does that casting process look like?
Well, the show doesn't just pick any mom of the Abby Lee Dance Company parent pool. Why? Because some of those moms could be noncompetitive, and supportive of every child, and basically, a total bore to watch on television. Dance Moms lives on highly emotional situations, and to ensure that the current season is as drama-packed as the next, casting needs to be a little more selective.
That's why there is a website for an open casting call for Dance Moms ! Now technically, I, a 23-year-old non-mother, could apply too, but I wouldn't be selected (or maybe I would if I put my Creative Writing degree to good use... In that case, watch out Maddie Ziegler, my imaginary daughter is coming for your solo). But after the casting directors weed through the phonies (like me), they are left with a special pile of names of potential new Dance Moms cast members, and the picking begins.
So what does this application look like? First, it has the usual questions:
- Name of parent(s)
- Name of dancer
- Current studio
- Video links to dance solos
Then, things take a turn for the specific. This is where the casting producers will separate the Brookes from the Maddies (if you will). Here are a handful of questions the casting application will ask you, and how I think a real Dance Mom would respond.
How Good Is Your Kid?
What Casting Is Looking For: Here is where a Dance Mom says how amazing her dancer is. This is not a place to hold back the dedication to making sure people know that you've got a star on your hands.
How You Should Answer: "On a scale from 1-10? My child is a Beyonce. Whether she is doing pirouettes or tumbling, those that watch her think they've been touched by an angel."
How Important Is Dance To You?
What Casting Is Looking For: You live, breathe, die, dance.
How You Should Answer: "I live, breathe, die, dance."
Who Is Your Kid's Biggest Competition In The Dance World?
What Casting Is Looking For: Here is where Dance Moms have to show their knowledge of the dance competition world. You can't just say, "Someone who can spin around four times, 'cuz my little baby can only spin thrice. "
How You Should Answer: "Maddie Ziegler"
Which Moms OnDance Moms Would You Butt Heads With?
What Casting Is Looking For: Again, you want to show some knowledge of the show, so this is a great time to name drop.
How You Should Answer: Name every single one of the current season moms.
After the applications are sent in, there is a open call where mothers and dancers attend. That's where the face-to-face happens, and you actually have to show up with a child dancer (so, I'm officially out). From the looks of sites promoting the open call, the casting call for the 2015 season was in Los Angeles. It's a long way from Pittsburgh, but the most dedicated Dance Moms hopefuls wouldn't let that get in their way.
Images: Scott Gries/Lifetime; Giphy (5)
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Reasons Why Dance Moms Is Totally Fake
In 2011, Lifetime Network graced the world of Dance Moms, a reality show that followed in the footsteps of other successful shows In Young girls and their persistence, squabbling mothers. I guess tots & tiaras with franchise flavors real housewives mix in for good measure. Moms in Dance revolves around Abby Lee Miller of the "Pittsburgh" studio of the Abby Lee Dance Company (ALDC), and her junior elite standings. What drives the show is the consistent yelling and insane demands from Miller, coupled with Mom's drama. The series presents a behind-the-scenes look into the world of dancesport, while lighting a steady dose of over-the-top chaos.
From the beginning, many dance mom fans were wondering if certain aspects of the show were being rolled out on camera. How entertaining, how dramatic can it be, how real is it? Conflict on the series as a choreographer, like his performances? Let's find out what's really going on behind the scenes at one of life's most lucrative programs.
Show choreographer drama
It's not rocket science to the viewers that "reality" TV is not entirely authentic. Reportedly, elements of many programs are improved to keep viewers interested, and life seems to feel free to use this method. Dancer Kalani Hilliker opened OK! A magazine that in some situations were staged during the season 5 finale.
As a rule, the girls at the show are required to perform every week for a new competition. Sometimes, if they land on Miller's good side, they get the opportunity to showcase a solo. During the finals, Miller had Hilliker and ballet dancer Nia Frazier compete against each other in a fight to the death to determine who would get the chance to perform solo at the Nationals. In the end, Frazier was declared the winner of the challenge. Naturally, Miller's decision caused an air of rift between the dancers' mothers.
However, a few key components of such a tense situation were reportedly omitted from the footage that was shown on TV, such as this important piece of information: "I did do a solo on the Nationals," Hilliker said in a buzzword. "It just wasn't on TV." Yes, all that TV drama was ostensibly for nothing, since both girls got their moments in the spotlight. While it's fair to say that a staged version of this story sounds much more interesting than the so-called truth, fans want to keep this tale alive next time Moms in the Dance tries toying with the audience's emotions.
His big stars say it's fake
Dancer Maddie Ziegler became a worldwide sensation after starring in Dancing with the Stars. She demonstrated her abilities for five seasons before taking on an international title for herself as the heroine of Asya's "Chandelier" video. Miller's mom and bandwagon certainly catalyzed Ziegler's career, but despite acknowledging the show's impact on her life, Ziegler also confirmed that more than just dance moves are being performed on the show. “It's hard to do a reality show when there are so many tears and drama. Manufacturers tweak it to make us all yell at each other,” Ziegler told USA Today. “Moms fake sometimes fight. Then they just start talking and laughing about it.”
Even Miller's boss says the show team has gone too far. “They're just spurring people on. They push you to the brink of exhaustion and the brink of going insane," she told TMZ. “I just don't think the show should be played. I think we should just let things happen."
Practice (and reshoots) to make it perfect
When it comes to TV shows and movies, it's not unheard of for scenes to be shot multiple times from different angles, but where does the line lie with reality TV? You may have heard of Kim Kardashian requesting that her marriage proposal to basketball player Kris Humphreys be re-shot for E!'s Keeping Up with the Kardashians, but did you know dance moms are too much, even with actual dance competitions?
According to Radar Online, "everything I've recorded multiple times to ensure the producers got the maximum take for the show. " As a result, the days were long and the young people were often exhausted. The show may air for a 60-minute block, but daily shoots reportedly can last as long as nine hours. The girls allegedly got multiple opportunities to perform dances too in the competition, which definitely doesn't sound fair to other teams. "Dance mom stars got a few chances to perfect their dances," Radar reports. "The other participants in the competitions were allowed only one performance."
Still in denial? Reportedly attended by a reporter from Business International once one of the contests for girls in 2014 and checked the inequality. "I can confirm clicking on [the show] does not represent a typical event," the journalist said. "Not only is the number of participants noticeably less than average...the production and single-handedly pushed back the start time of the competition are awaiting the arrival of the OANRC's group."
The seemingly exhausting pace of life for the dancers on the show raised eyebrows among the audience. The OANRC girls attend a new competition every week and somehow manage to win with honors in the vast majority of them. How do the kids pull off such memorable performances, as well as filming shows, attend school, and try to lead pretty normal lives?
By manipulating reality, of course! From the moment the girls arrive at the competition, the whole stage turns into an organized event. According to the International Business Competition time shown on the program, there is often not enough real competition. "OANRS LA swept the devotion competition 2 dance [season 6] but that's not certain because they were the 'cream'," NTT reports. "Looks like [Miller's] two teams were the only groups to compete. " In the addition of a farce cast, the contestants are reportedly given a reserved seat for the competition, and the crowd's reaction is allegedly staged too, because they were filming separately from the actual performances.
And it turns out like this: bossy Miller, they say, they don't talk much because of the music and choreography that you see on the show. While viewers tune in for a week to watch her coach the girls on a gorgeous routine, the network reportedly selects and approves all of the music and dance featured on the show.
Not all girls are loyal members of the OANRC
If the reality show was going to call itself "Dancing with the Stars", one would assume the dancers and their moms would be full members of the dance studio, but you know what they're saying about assumptions?
The Hilliker dancer has been an asset to the Pennsylvania OANRC studio since she jumped on our TV screens, but you knew she was trained at a club dance studio in Mesa, Arizona. before joining mom in dance and, at the time of this writing, continues to be an active member of the dance club? According to USC Annenberg media, Hilliker only trains with OANRS when filming is shown; during the off-season, she returns to Arizona to resume training with club dances. Ballet dancer Ziegler told the International Business Times that Hilliker "don't go to the [OANRS] studio". Hilliker isn't the only one hiding a dick at the dance moms part of the time. Season 5 addition JoJo Siwa is also reported to train with Miller only during filming.
So why throw these outsiders around? Drama, of course. "These new moms of girls usually start problems with the original mothers, claiming that their kids will keep the spots of the originals," USC Annenberg told media. "Once again, all hell breaks loose."
Fan favorite Mackenzie Ziegler, the younger sister of superstar Maddie Ziegler, is not even a member of OARRC's most elite team. Sis is reportedly just joining Maddie and the rest of the elite squad for filming. "I don't really dance with them," McKenzie told the International Business Times. "I'm dancing with another group, it's completely different." In reality, little Mackenzie spends much of his time with dancers his own age. Sorry guys, photos this time.
No matter how much the dance mom tries to produce suspense, the ratings say viewers can see through the façade and move on. During the show's fifth season, ratings began to drop after several stars, including showgirl Chloe Lukasiak and mom Christy Lukasiak as well as sisters Maddie and Mackenzie Ziegler and their mother, Melissa Gisoni. The aforementioned ladies seemed to take a lot of unmissable drama with them as they left.
To stir up interest, the series refocused on a cold, hard dose of truth: the coach's legal troubles. At the time of this writing, she is facing federal charges of fraudulent bankruptcy and money laundering. According to the Post-Gazette of Pittsburgh, Miller is "accused of withholding $755,000 in assets from her television shows from bankruptcy proceedings. The case began after a bankruptcy judge saw her on TV in December 2012 and thought she should be making more than $8.89.9 she claims the monthly income.” The series milked her on TV, producing tears the moment that implied Miller was leaving the show.
All that premonition turned out to be for nothing, however, because Miller didn't miss a beat and was back for season 6, though we can't say the same about the show's ratings. On TV by the numbers (according to online radar) the series' mid-season premiere attracted only 961,000 viewers, a drop from the 1.3 million people who tuned in for the season's premiere, leading many to believe the jig (literally and figuratively) was.
Season 7 debuted in November 2016. Can the cast and crew concoct enough reality to keep viewers coming back? We will keep you informed.
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Who changed more than 15 Dance Mom stars then and now / Entertainment
Back in 2011, a new reality show called Dance Moms aired on Lifespan and allowed viewers a behind-the-scenes look at Abby Lee's busy dance company. The show originally starred founder and dance teacher Abby Lee Miller and dancers Maddie and Mackenzie Ziegler; Chloe Lukasiak; Nia Frazier; Brooke and Paige Hyland; and Kendall Vertes. What the producers initially said to expect from the show was a day in the life of "young, professional, hard-working dancers". However, what they got was something completely different...
Six seasons of catfights, screaming matches and verbal attacks later, Dance Moms has fully established itself as one of the most entertaining reality programs of all time. There were tears, tantrums and antics - surprisingly almost always came from mothers. Episodes still average between 2.5 million and 2.8 million viewers, and the dance company has won many fans around the world (as well as many competitions!)
who their mothers so desperately wanted to see? Here we take a look at what the main cast looks like now, as well as whether they're going to stay for a seventh season next year..
15 Abby Lee Miller
All the names on this list would be nothing if not for dance coach, choreographer and studio owner Abby Lee Miller - something she will never let dancers forget. She founded the Abby Lee Miller dance company when she was only 14 years old and has been screaming for those who are smaller than her ever since. As the star of Dance Moms , she appeared in six seasons and 138 episodes.
Last year, the 49-year-old star received backlash on social media for her comments about losing weight. She said people Journal that she lost weight, just do not eat. One commenter wrote on the Internet: “So she lost weight from hunger and vomiting? And she's in charge of the young dancers?!" This was just the beginning of the controversy for Abby as she hit the headlines last October with a huge financial scandal.
She was charged with twenty counts of fraud, including bankruptcy fraud, concealment of bankruptcy-related assets, and false bankruptcy filings. Court documents have accused the hot-blooded star trainer of hiding more than $755,000 worth of assets that should be included in her bankruptcy filings. Insiders say she is working on a plea deal with her legal team that could see her dodge five years in prison.
14 Mackenzie Ziegler
Mackenzie won the hearts of thousands when she first appeared in the first season as Maddie's adorable little sister. By the third season, it was clear that Mackenzie was becoming a star in her own right, acquiring many titles of her own. Then, to shock everyone, her mom, Melissa Gisoni, announced that Mackenzie would not be returning after the sixth season.
In episode 15, Melissa called all the girls in the Abby Lee dance troupe and announced that they were leaving for good. Surprisingly, Mackenzie didn't know anything about this, as she is known to be a "talker" and could have reported it too soon. Mackenzie said on the show, "My mom got all the girls and she told them we were going to leave, which I didn't even know." Before adding: "I was just shocked because I feel like I would have been there until the end because I was there from the very beginning."
13 Kathy Nesbitt-Stein
Everyone loves the villain and Kathy Nesbitt-Stein from rival dance studio Candy Apples because she played her so well. Katie joined the cast of Dance Moms for six weeks in 2011, and her dark side was so popular with fans that she stayed for another five seasons. Unfortunately, by Season 5, the Rotten Apples leader decided to call him out.
Cathy told IBTimes , “It's been a very busy time for my studio. I had to explain to them that, you know, I have a business too, and I don't feel comfortable leaving my clientele with anyone when I'm the one who produces all this work in its entirety." show. That's why you don't see me in the whole back half." Since filming moved from Pittsburgh to LA, it's all turned out to be too much for the beloved cat fighter..
Although Abby is her nemesis, she had something nice to say about her during an interview with Real MrHousewife when she stated, “Some people are talented as reality stars and some people are not. Although Abby is a huge cannibal on TV and in real life she is talented to be a reality star. She is quick and witty.” Well. .. a compliment.
12 Vivi-Ann Stein
Cathy's daughter, Vivi-Ann Stein, first joined the show in the first season as part of Abby Lee's dance company - the only problem was that she wasn't very good. Her mother had high hopes for her daughter, but compared to other girls, she just didn't make the cut. It was a really tough start for Vivi-Anne, who was only six years old at the time..
Cathy has always defended Vivi-Anne's abilities, telling IBTimes : "We had a great, big solo concert and we went to a national party, and unlike what you see on TV, when our troops fight, we won great citizens. Ironically, Vivi was in several numbers that were the best of the best and she ended up among those who won the top national prize." may return as real stars of the show - time will tell...
11 Asia Monet Ray
Asia Monet Ray was one of the best dancers in Dance Moms - landing first place and best result in almost every competition. She left the dance company Abby Lee in 2013 with high expectations for the future. Another reason for her departure was that her mother, Christy Rae, had had enough of fighting between other moms. Christie has stated on the show that she no longer wants her daughter in a "harmful" environment.
Since she left the show, Asia and her family got their own reality series called Educating Asia and she also landed a role playing the daughter of O.J. Simpson in American Crime Story . The series followed the 90s murder of Simpson's ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ron Goldman. Even though she is only 10 years old, Asia has really studied the case. She told IBTimes , "This is my first role that I really had to explore. I was not born at that time. Everyone thinks because I'm so old that I'm 30 years old and I remember what happened."
10 Payton Ackerman
Payton first appeared on the show in the second season, but her mother's constant bickering drew the attention, not her dancing skills. Leslie Ackerman constantly complained that her daughter was never a permanent part of the team, causing Abby Lee Miller to respond that Payton was "too tall" and should be "cut in half". Leslie was throwing punches (physically) during a catfight with Christy Lukasiak and the police had to be called—everyone, even though they were supposed to represent the dance company in the competition.
Apparently Abby wasn't about to let this get past her, and as punishment, Payton was suspended from the team. Many viewers thought it was pretty cruel since Payton didn't do anything wrong other than being her mother's daughter, but that's just Abby.
Payton traveled with her mother for two hours every day just to take dance lessons. She continues to dance (far from Abby Lee Miller) and aspires to one day have her own studio. Look Abby, Payton could be your next opponent...
9 Kalani Hilliker
Kalani Hilliker and her mother Kira Girard first appeared on Dance Moms for Season 2, but after weak hip hop performances, they were soon uploaded. Kalani returned in the fourth season and impressed Abby Lee Miller with her flexibility and technique. Kira then left the show (and her daughter behind) to return home to her youngest son and husband. She tweeted, "Sorry fans who made a family decision can't leave me (sic) a man and a boy to make my baby famous! (Kilani) will make herself famous without her mother."
Then, just two months ago, Kira was arrested on charges of fraud and theft. Official Court Documents Obtained by Radar Online . Read: "Kira was involved in the crime of fraudulently receiving money from victims who entered into an agreement with her to purchase plasma HDTVs that she posted for sale via ebay.com. (She) buyers send her money, through a personal check or wire transfer, and then cannot deliver their item or refund." Apparently the scheme she ran for a year made her $15,525.
Kira confessed to fraud, paid more than $5,000 in fines, and was sentenced to two years' probation. In true Dance Moms style, there are always good kids and bad moms.
8 Gianna Martello
27-year-old Gianna Martello, known to those close to her as "Gia", is an assistant to choreographer Abby Lee Miller. She was a dancer herself before turning into an expert and creating her own winning program for the team. From a very young age, she wanted to be a dancer, telling Park News Service : “I started dancing when I was three years old. My mom danced, my grandma danced, everyone in my family danced, so that's the only thing I've ever known."
It's amazing that Gia never had a role in the series. She also added, "I've always been called Abby's right hand because in competitions I've always given music to the judges and warmed up the girls and all that. So when we got the show, Melissa said, "Well, we're not going anywhere without Gia," so the producer called me and said, "We'll be filming for six weeks, but everyone says you need them in competition." I kind of got into the show from there." Now that she's ready to shoot scenes for season 7 - will she have the dancers left or will Abby scare most of them?
7 JoJo Siwa
JoJo Siwa joined Dance Moms in 2015 and became a permanent member of their competitive team. She has been learning to dance since she was one year old and has made a lasting impression despite being on the show for such a short time. Her natural charisma didn't take long until she landed some very lucrative show business deals with her. JoJo also released her debut single, Boomerang , just last month, which has amassed over 22 million views on YouTube alone.
There are a lot of rumors that JoJo won't be returning for Season 7, especially since fellow Dance Mom posted a photo on Instagram with the slogan, "And then there were 4!" which did not include JoJo. The 13-year-old landed a role on the hit kids show " Bizaardvark !" where she will appear as a blogger. Could this be the end of the dance for JoJo, now she's slowly becoming a new actress?0003
6 Kendall Vertes
Kendall Vertes appeared on Dance Moms From the very first season she trains hard, competes well and gets along with all the other girls. On the other hand, her mother, Jill Vertes, received a lot of negative press online after she was accused of "bullying" earlier this year. it didn't take long to make the girl cry after she refused to celebrate her arrival and pulled back from joining the team. Jill responded to the hate mail with the following tweet: “People should not judge a person or a child by what they see on a TV show. I'm not a bully, but I'm probably being bullied right now. It's funny how people hate a bully, then act bully."
She also added in her defense that the footage shown on Dance Moms is the product of producers who assemble 42 minutes of footage over a 60-hour week of filming. To which she tweeted enough time to "pick up all the rotten stuff they need". You still made the baby cry, Jill...
5 Brooke and Paige Hyland
Brooke and Paige finally left with their mother Kelly Dance Moms last year after five seasons of the drama. During an interview with GOOD! magazine , Kelly announced that her two daughters have never been happier and now things are better and they can live a "normal life". She said, “That was one of the many problems I had with being on the show. Get my kids to do normal things like kids their age. They wanted to go to school dances and do that kind of stuff, and they were never allowed."
Things got so bad when they were filming that Kelly and Abby Lee Miller became physically violent with each other. Kelly clapped and pulled on Abby's hair while filming Episode 7 of Season 4 when the team was competing in New York. After a bitter legal battle, Kelly decided to separate for good, taking both of her daughters with her..
4 Melissa Gisoni
Melissa Gisoni appeared in every episode of Dance Moms along with her daughters Mackenzie and Maddie Ziegler. She's dedicated herself to turning her daughters into star dancers, and it's paid off for her (literally). In 2009, Melissa filed for bankruptcy after court documents showed that she was spending $8,000 a month - more than double her $4,408 a month to return home. Radar Online also posted that she owed creditors $1,214,284. 15.
Maddy then took over, taking the lead role for Sia's commercials. Chandelier, Elastic Heart, Big Girls Cry and Cheap Thrills . Insiders now determine her daughter is worth a staggering $2 million, which was enough to save her from financial hardship. It seems like all those expensive dance lessons have finally paid off.
Melissa finally decided to pull her two star daughters off the show after a series of arguments with Abby Lee Miller. One even resulted in Melissa routinely yelling quietly in front of the cameras, "I'm going to punch her in the face!" In the fourth season, Melissa later revealed that she was tired of Abby taking the anger out of her daughters..
3 Nia Frazier
Nia didn't have the easiest time in her years Dance Moms . She has been a regular on the competitive team since season one, but it took her a long time to prove to Abby Lee Miller that she had what it takes to go the distance. Fans have always been heartbroken that Nia never got the attention she deserved from Abby despite Nia training five hours a day, three days a week to get ahead. Along with other conflicts including her mother, known as Dr. Holly on the show, voicing her concern Nya has always been a "typist" in dancing exploring minorities, she seems to have finally announced that she is leaving the show and has no intention of returning in Season Seven.
Nia has now renamed herself "Nia Sioux" and started a popular career. Her track slay, which also includes Coco Jones, has amassed over 2 million views on YouTube. She will also join the cast of the Broadway show Love Travel, which she confirmed after she tweeted, “I can’t wait to move to New York with my mom this month and then hit the stage in July! It's going to be the best summer ever!" She will perform during number These boots are made for walking , Moon River , and Destroy . on Broadway stage 42. So take it, Abby Lee Miller!
2 Chloe Lukasiak
Chloe Lukasiak's main rival since the first season has been Maddie Ziegler. Chloe left in Season 4, but now Maddie has just announced that she has left the show - does that mean Chloe will be back? The 15-year-old star already has a full filming schedule for her own dance webisodes titled Dance lessons with Chloe for beginning dancers. Along with the lessons, she will also appear on an upcoming TV show called Cowgirl Story.
We don't think her mother, the irascible Christos Lukasiak, will be overly impressed with her return to the studio, as it's safe to say she never dated Abby Lee Miller. In an interview with International Business Times , asked why the couple didn't leave sooner, Christy replied, "I think for me, in the beginning, it was always about Khloe. She was an only child for eight years, and indeed the other girls in the studio were her sisters. I mean, she grew up in this world with these girls.” If there is a comeback, we certainly expect the same fireworks to start all over again.0003
1 Maddie Ziegler
There is no doubt that Maddie Ziegler was not the real breakout star of Dance Moms . The 2014 music video for Sia's Chandelier , which saw star Maddie in her now-infamous swimsuit and blonde wig, racked up an incredible 1.3 billion views, making it the 16th most watched YouTube video of all time.